Ronald D. Moore of BattleStar fame talks about how his Virtuality pilot, now being aired as a standalone movie on Fox, might still get promoted to a series. Virtuality follows the crew of the starship Phaeton, on a 10 year mission to some airless rock someplace uncomfortable. On the way, to avoid possible space madness in the cramped and therefore realistic Phaeton, the crew resorts to virtual reality to pass the time and to give the illusion of space.
However, something nasty has invaded their comfortable virtual dreams, something with an unknown agenda. Imagine being stuck on probably a one way journey to no-place, squashed together with several stinky and stressed out crew mates and having your only means of escape contaminated with a malevolent, something. Sounds awesome to me. Ronald thinks it’s good and if we watch, we might get to see more of it.
This movie was meant to be a pilot. So you finished it, handed it to Fox and what happened next?
Moore: Well, [Fox entertainment president] Kevin Reilly’s first response was, “I love it, and if this was a movie, I’d put it straight to DVD right now and release it, and it’d do big business. It’s a great movie. But as a pilot, I’m not sure.” He wanted to tinker around with it a little bit, and we played with variations on it, until we all got to a version we were happy with, and that was the version that Kevin took up the line to the rest of the people at Fox.
And ultimately I think the communal reaction was that they were impressed by the production value of the show, they were challenged by the story material, and they just didn’t know if it was going to work on the Fox network or not. They haven’t officially said, “That’s it. It’s over.” You never know how these things turn out, but at the moment I think Fox’s attitude is probably wait and see.
Virtuality stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Sienna Guillory and James D’Arcy and will air on June 26th at 8pm. Scifiwire has a nice juicy interview with Ronald, excerpt above, that you can read after the jump.